January 25, 2019

London PT. 1

Hello from a very sad Yarnelle,

I have returned from London and I now know that nothing will ever compare. Brace yourselves for very melodramatic posts about how I have peaked. They are coming. 5 days in London was not nearly enough but somehow also the highlight of my life thus far.

London has amazing energy, that's a statement that can be said about most cityscapes. But there's just something about London, man. I found myself leaving my hotel and just walking around, taking turns down streets just cause I felt like it. If you're looking for someone who will 'go with the flow' that's not me, unless "the flow" is a 4-page itinerary with back up plans and alternative directions to get from A to B. I planned this trip to death and then just kinda loosely followed it. There will be three parts to these London blog posts, this one will be more about traveling alone and being alone and what I have learned. Be prepared these are gonna long !

Before this trip, I had only been on a plane one time. It was also with a group of 18 people so I didn't really have to worry about much but sticking together. This time, I had to navigate everything on my own. I also picked a pretty bad time to fly because with the American government being shut down TSA isn't being paid but are still required to come to work. I was told to expect long lines, no one working and trap music blasting from the speaker system in the airport. I turned up at the airport at 7:30 am for my 11:20am flight to find; no line at check in, no line for security and no one at my gate. It was like the airport was empty. I breezed through to my gate, got breakfast and got comfortable. I'm one of those really strange people who actually really enjoy flying. Most people hear '6 and a half hour flight' and they cry, meanwhile I'm the one in the corner cheesing. 'You mean I get to sit in the clouds for 6 hours while at the same time also moving 100 of miles an hour ?' I had downloaded my movies (ones I have already seen) and had my playlists all ready. I slept for 3 hours on the flight and then spent the rest of the time eating, looking out the window and watching Indiana Jones on Netflix. I was really worried about the time difference because when I landed in was only 5pm in New York and London was getting ready to turn in for the night. My flying experience by myself was great, which wasn't unexpected but I am still grateful for. 

I haven't ever felt as at ease and relaxed visiting anywhere as I did while I was visiting London. I don't know how or why this happened but I felt completely chill while there. I really wanted to get a feel for the city not just the super touristy areas so I spent a lot of my time walking around London. Personally, I feel that walking or taking the bus is the best way to really see a city. 
And London has so much to see.

Since I was younger and struggled with my weight and loving my body, it has been really hard for me to eat in public. This is something that most fat/plus size people deal with. There's this constant voice in your head telling you that everyone is looking at you and judging you. You feel shame around something that is simple and is meant to be good for your body. We all need to eat to live. The fact that anyone is made to be ashamed of eating is a travesty but it happens all the time. I remember being a child and being hungry and having people comment negatively on what I was eating or that I was eating at all. I remember feeling disgusting for being caught doing something that I was made to feel like I shouldn't have been doing. Eating.

All throughout my first two years of college, I would skip going to the dining hall alone if I could help it. I would go as far as to skip meals. I knew rationally that no one was watching me and that no one cared but I still couldn't eat in public on my own. Once I decided to go to London alone I promised myself that I would eat in public as much as possible. Even if it's a snack on a park bench I would make a point to eat, and eat alone in public on my trip. And eat I did. Because I'm that person I went for Afternoon Tea while I was away. Alone. I went out and ate breakfast in a pub. Alone. I went sightseeing and stopped and got a Nandos. (worth the hype) Alone. I took it back for myself. I refused to feel ashamed because I wasn't doing anything wrong. I didn't feel ashamed or disgusting and I don't think it had anything to do with being in London, it was me. I couldn't be bothered with the voices anymore, I knew they were wrong.

I stayed in Kensington during my trip and on this day the amazingly talented Shweta and I took a walk from the Kynance Mews to the National History Museum. Kensington is just a pop away from Notting Hill and about 15-20 mins on the tube from Covent Garden. Kensington itself is absolutely beautiful. I didn't have anything planned to see in the area but since I was alone, I found that I could pop in and out of shops or pubs in the area.

I wanted this trip to be about me becoming more and more comfortable with being alone in a crowd of people. I feel like it was a success. Traveling by yourself gives you a sense of freedom that I have only felt in small doses. I did exactly what I wanted and at the pace I wanted the entire trip. I recommend everyone travel alone at least once. It doesn't have to be aboard of anything like that. You can do a solo road trip, a solo camping, hiking trip or simply booking yourself a nice hotel room and chilling out. As long as you're being safe and smart and someone knows where to look for you if anything were to go wrong, do it. I found that it was easier to learn to love myself the more time I spent by myself. I wasn't comparing myself to anyone else or worrying if people were looking at me. These aren't things I do as often as I once did anymore. Self-love and being good to yourself and your body is a journey. I have found you can't really start if you don't learn to like yourself. So take yourself out on a date, Fly Yourself out, splash out of a gift for yourself(within reason, we got student loans to pay back) be good and kind to yourself !

Where is somewhere you have always wanted to visit ? London was definitely high on my list but that doesn't mean I wouldn't go back in a heartbeat, there is still so much to see ! 

Photography Credit to the Amazing Shweta ! and some to my shitty cell phone.  
- Y x

Biker coat - here and here
Pink jumpsuit (bday gift from Kaila !) - here
Black turtleneck - here
Sock Boots - sold out similar here

Mood: Almost (Sweet Music) - Hozier (such a BOP)

January 08, 2019

Year 23

Year 23
One time for the birthday bissh ! So, I turned 23 this weekend and it was great ! I usually attempt to make a whole big thing out of my...

January 03, 2019

NYC ---> LDN

NYC ---> LDN
Hello and Happy New Year everyone ! ! ! ! I AM GOING TO LONDON ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! Yes, that numb...
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